Michael McFadyen's Scuba Diving Web Site
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Noel Hitchins 1951-2005
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Our Yachting Adventures
Below is a list of links to the main pages about our yacht, Catlypso and our Our Yachting Adventures:
  • Purchase of Catlypso
  • Details about Catlypso
  • Cleaning/Repairing Catlypso
  • Our Yachting Adventures.
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    Michael and Kelly's 4WD Trips
    Click here for a list of our Four Wheel Drive and Camping Trips.
    Current Kareela Weather
    A summary of the current weather conditions at our house at Kareela, Sydney, is below. Click here for more Detailed Diving Weather and Conditions. Weather from Michael McFadyen's Tempe Weather Station


    Conditions at
    23:49 on 23/1/17

     
    Temperature 25.6°C
    Humidity 65.0%
    Barometer 1003.4hPa
    Rate -0.3hPa/hr
    Wind Speed: 0 km/hr
    Wind Direction S
    Rainfall for Today 0.0mm
    Rainfall last hour 0.0 mm
    Rainfall last 24 hours 0.0 mm
    Rainfall at Start of Month 814.6 mm
    Rainfall this Year 827.0 mm
    Today's Extremes
    High Temperature 31.2°C at 15:48
    Low Temperature 20.9°C at 6:27
    Peak Wind Gust 0km/hr at 0:00
    Weather from Michael McFadyen's Kirrawee Weather Station
    Yesterday's Extremes
    High Temperature 27.5°C at 17:11
    Low Temperature 19.8°C at 6:29
    Rainfall at Start of Yesterday 827.0 mm
    Rainfall at End of Yesterday 827.0 mm
    Weather from Michael McFadyen's Tempe Weather Station
    Astronomical Data
    Sunrise 5:06
    Sunset 19:05
    Moonrise 1:09
    Moonset 15:04

    Home Brewing
    Click here for an article about Home Brewing.
    Sydney Dive Site Hints
    "By-Pass Reef was named after John Beddie"
    Cape York Trip - 2000 - Part 1
    THE TRIP

    Over the August to September 2000 period I was accompanied a group from the Toyota LandCruiser Club that did a trip to Cape York, the northern most tip of mainland Australia.

    The trip was led by Les and Elly Caterson who are our friends from the St George Scuba Club. They had their Toyota LandCruiser 80 series petrol. I was travelling with Daryl Gibbs, another diver buddy (also not a member of the LandCruiser Club), in his 1999 LandRover Discovery. The Discovery is a 2.5 litre 5 cylinder turbo diesel, with automatic transmission. It has traction control but no locking centre diff. We had an Engel fridge, a canvas pyramid type tent. We carried an extra wheel as well as one Jerry can of fuel. We had all normal safety and reapir gear and between us and the group we had everything covered.

    Also on the trip was:

  • Ray and his wife in a Toyota LandCruiser 100 series petrol
  • John and Norma in an Toyota LandCruiser 80 series petrol
  • David and Irmgard in a Toyota LandCruiser 80 series petrol
  • Julius and his friend in a Toyota LandCruiser 80 series petrol
  • Brian in a Toyota LandCruiser 100 series diesel
  • All the others have left Sydney a few days or even a week before we do. We plan to meet them in Cairns in Far North Queensland.

    Note that the photos in these articles are not the best as they are from film and when developed, came out very poorly despite having a very good camera and good film. I will find more photos over the coming months and scan and load them to the site.

    SYDNEY TO CAIRNS

    Thursday 10 August 2000

    We leave Sydney at 7:15 am and head north along the F3 towards Newcastle. At the end of the freeway we headed over to the New England Highway and went up towards Scone. At the intersection with the Golden Highway we stop for morning tea. It was 9:40 am. At 9:55 am we are back underway. Just out of Willow Tree we take the Kamilaroi Highway to Quirindi and just before the town it veers to Gunnedah. We arrive there at 12:30 pm and stop in the very nice park in the middle of the town for lunch.

    At 12:56 pm we are back on the road and we pass through Boggabri and Narrabri and arrive at Moree at 3:05 pm. We have afternoon tea here and at 3:15 pm we were off again on the Newell Highway. We arrive at Goondiwindi at 4:30 pm. This is just over the border in Queensland. We refuel here, requiring 80.5 litres at a cost of $70. We have travelled 748 kilometres at a consumption rate of 10.7 litres per 100 kilometres. Pretty good considering how loaded up we are and the speed that we have been travelling at an average speed of about 90 km/h.

    After refuelling, we head north along the Leichhardt Highway and in the next 15 kilometres we see over 21 dead kangaroos on the side of the road. I have never seen so many dead roos anywhere.

    We had planned to stop at Moonie but when we arrive in the town we discover that there is no hotel or motel, so we have to continue. It is now dark and there are lots of live kangaroos on the side of the road. We slow up to about 80 km/h.

    A few kilometres out of the town at 6 pm we hit a kangaroo. I am driving and the roo has jumped out from the side of the road and I hit it almost square on. It bounds off as I pull over. The kangaroo has hit the nudge bar (not a full bull bar) and pushed it back a few inches. We cannot pull it back straight but there is no real problem so we are back on the road 15 minutes later.

    We drive much slower as there are even more kangaroos on the side of the road. We arrive at Miles at 7:35 pm, having travelled the 224 kilometres from Goondiwindi in just under three hours at the relatively slow speed (for this flat, good road) of 79 kilometres an hour. This was, of course, due to the many kangaroos in the second half of the trip.

    We stay at the Miles Starline Motor Inn after trying two that are full. We have dinner at the adjacent Miles and District Memorial Club ($63 twin). We travelled 972 kilometres today at an average speed of about 86 km/h.

    Friday 11 August 2000

    We get up early as we need to repair the nudge bar. We drive out of town and near the outskirts we see a park. We find a large tree and using a tow rope, we tie the bar to the tree. We loosen the bolts that hold the bar to the chassis and using low range and reverse, we pull the bar back into shape and place. We rebolt it in place and head off at 8:38 am.

    We are still heading north and stop at Taroom at 9:55 am for morning tea. We are back underway at 10:10 am and head via Banana and then take the Dawson Highway to Wowan where we arrive at 12:33 pm. We have lunch here in a nice picnic area next to the old railway station (we have travelled 351 kilometres at an average speed of just over 95 km/h). We leave at 1:05 pm and travel through Mount Morgan to Rockhampton. We arrive at 2 pm. We refuel and need 62.5 litres at $53. We have travelled 656 kilometres since our last refuel at 9.5 litres per 100 kilometres.

    We leave Rocky at 2:45 pm and follow the Bruce Highway north. At 6:15 pm we arrive at Mackay. We have travelled 768 kilometres at an average of 95 km/h for the day. We book into the Miners Lodge for $73 for a twin. We have dinner at a local Chinese restaurant.

    Saturday 12 August 2000

    We leave Mackay at 7:30 am and still follow the Bruce Highway (as we will all the way to Cairns) and pass through Prosperpine at 8:51 am and arrive at Bowen at 9:30 am. We stop for morning tea and refuel. We take 54.7 litres at $47.50 and an average of 10.3 litres/100 km for the 532 kilometres since Rockhampton.

    We continue north at 9:50 am and at 1:03 pm stop for lunch near Ingham. We are back on the road at 1:20 pm. At 3:02 pm we pass through Innisfail and at 4:08 pm we arrive at Cairns.

    We meet up with the others at the caravan park which is a little out of the main section of town.

    We have travelled 2,493 kilometres from Sydney in just under three days of driving (25 hours and 36 minutes of driving at an average of 97 km/h).

    Daryl and I go to the marina area and we have dinner and a couple of drinks here. I had been to Cairns in about 1985 and it has changed a lot and I have since been back to Cairns and this whole area is now totally different again (much improved).

    Sunday 13 August 2000

    Today we are going on a trip to Kuranda. We get picked up at the caravan park and are driven in a bus to the Sky Rail. This is a gondola that travels over the top of the trees to the town on the top of the nearby mountains. Half way up there is a gondola station and you can get off. Here you can go for a walk around the forest and there are guides who explain things to you. At your own time you get back on and travel the last bit to Kuranda.

    Kuranda is a cute little town that has some nice pubs, a lot of arty shops and plenty of souvenir shops. We spend the time walking around before having some lunch and a few beers.

    Late in the afternoon we walk to the train station and have another beer before climbing aboard the train. This is a fantastic trip, going down the very steep incline and on the track that is built into the side of the valley. The train arrives in Cairns at the main station and we are picked up and driven back to the camping area.

    We do some final shopping and refuel taking 62 litres at a cost of $53.27. We also put 20.9 litres in a Jerry can. We have averaged 8.2 litres litres/100 km for the 753 kilometres since Bowen.

    For the next part of this trip, click here.

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